It’s middle February and if the only “burpee” you’re doing is still only after a big meal; it’s time!

“Exercise is the magic pill” according to Michael R Bracko, chairman of The American College of Sport’s Medicine’s Consumer Information Committee. Regular exercise gives you that healthy glow and unmistakable va-va-voom that you just can’t get any other way. It reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, improves our mood, strengthens our bones and reduces the risk of some cancers. Also, there’s no arguing that exercise can help most people to lose weight.

But, there’s a catch. You need to get – and keep – moving if you want to cash in on the benefits.

No time? Although at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity on most days of the week is recommended, even 5 or 10 minutes of moving around will still give you benefits. Did you know that if you stand, pace, and tap your toes often, you can burn up to 350 calories a day!

It’s easy to talk yourself out of exercising, even if you have the best intensions. Half of people who start a new exercise regime ditch it within the first year because they simply can’t keep up the boot camp pace they’ve forced on themselves.

So, how do you stay in the game? You need to flip your focus. Instead of changing your whole life to fit into your fitness routine, choose to do something that you actually like. The secret is to find something that challenges you, but it should also be fun. Think of adding additional good things to your life. In fact, let your pile of good things grow!

There’s a whole world of fitness options out there. Whether you love running or boxing, group classes or at-home videos, there’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to fitness. Check out local studios that offer a wide variety of classes, and try them all! You may find that you were once a runner but that you now need a little more zen time on your yoga mat. “Date” different kinds of workouts until you find something you truly like. Variety and new experiences will keep you coming back for more.

Have a game plan. “Fail to plan, plan to fail”, right? Keep a fitness journal and write down what you aim to accomplish, whether it’s taking regular spin classes or taking a daily walk. Knowing your goals makes them easier to achieve.

Be accountable. Inspire a friend to join in the fun and start small. Too much too soon will leave you sore, injured or discouraged. So, take it easy at first. Sign up for workout classes geared specifically towards beginners, your workout should be challenging, but not so difficult that you feel defeated.

If you’re a gym bunny, mix it up. Do different types of workouts to keep things interesting and to exercise different muscle groups. You don’t have to reinvent your entire routine every week, but shift it around a little to keep it interesting.

Bottom line: You don’t have to train hard-core to live a healthy, happy life.

You’ve got this!

Source: experiencelife.com, jillianharris.com, shape.com, self.com, healthline.com, multiplesclerosis.com, webmd.com

DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is for educational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.